After the frenetic pace of Kumasi, a nature break was needed so I treated myself on my birthday to a day trip to nearby Lake Bosumtwi.
About 30km southeast of Kumasi (i.e. 45 min in a taxi), Lake Bosumtwi is the largest natural lake in Ghana and lies within a crater formed by a meteorite impact. The lake makes for a beautiful escape, surrounded by mountainous crater walls in vivid shades of green perfect for walking, bird watching, and canoeing.
Besides its natural beauty, there’s an ever present mystical feel in the air accentuated by the soft fog over the lake, stillness of the water and complete silence apart from the occasional flapping sound made by the local fishermen.
Considered sacred by the locals, the lake is supposedly where souls of the dead come to bid farewell to the god Twi. Due to these local beliefs it is only allowed to fish from wooden planks (padua) on the lake and is considered taboo to touch the water with iron or any metal (i.e. modern boat).
Fishermen use their hands, or plates in their hands, to propel themselves.
Kids too are enjoying ‘surfing’ on the lake using the paduas.
There are a few guest houses around the lake and I highly recommend where we stayed, the Lake Point Guest House. Set in beautiful landscaped grounds, the self contained bungalows are really charming, super clean, and just a few steps from the lake and a small beach where you can rent a boat or just relax in a hammock.
A true oasis of tranquility where the only sound you’ll hear are birds hiding in the trees and tropical plants.
Another excellent reason to stay at Lake Point Guest House is the food which is some of the best I’ve had in Ghana, and definitely the best around the lake. They miraculously serve real coffee (not that Nescafe you get everywhere in Ghana!), delicious crepes with syrup for breakfast and a tempting dinner menu written on a black board offering local specialties. Get the tilapia freshly caught from the lake…you won’t regret it!
Lizards of all shapes and sizes roam around the property.
Looking up you can easily spot tons of colorful birds and tropical fruits hanging high from the trees such as bananas, papayas, etc.
The guest house is surrounded by cocoa trees which are perfect for taking in some shade or even a nice nap.
While a tarmac road links Kumasi to the main village of Abono on the northern shore of the lake, you need to drive on a dirt track to get to any of the guest houses so there really aren’t many cars around here.
Though the path doesn’t go all the way around the lake, you can walk a pretty big section of it to take in the views on its hills and go through picturesque villages of which there are about 30.
We even had a local kid tagging along and entertaining us with the myriads of legends about the lake and the local beliefs.
One more reason to stay the night is for the chance to see the lake in the golden hour, the sunset turning the roads deep orange and casting a beautiful warm glow on the vegetation.
I’m getting used to having kids dying to pose in front of my camera…